Expanding your family can be a great experience. However, even though you’ve had almost nine months to get ready for this new stage of life and perhaps even longer if you’ve been trying to get pregnant for a while, there might still be things you don’t know when it comes to taking care of the little one. So, if you’re a new mum or about to become one, here are some tips to keep in mind.
Know how to hold your baby
For starters, you need to learn how to hold your baby. You want their head to be on the crook of your arm while your hand should support their spine. Feed your little one with your other hand and make sure you don’t shake them as this can result in brain injury. If you’re trying to lull them to sleep, opt for gentle rocking, playing music or singing a lullaby.
Ensure proper feeds
Something else that you should get on top of as soon as possible is feeding. Your little one will need to be fed every two hours, maybe even more often. You need to have plenty of feeding supplies and be ready to feed them during every part of the day. If you opt for breastfeeding, learn how to hold the newborn during the process. In case you choose formula, you need to prepare a fresh meal every time. Don’t keep any leftovers. Moreover, if your baby has been sleeping for over five hours without feeding, you want to wake them up and offer milk. However, you should not feed them by force. Lastly, you should burp your baby properly after every feed.
Learn how to take care of their hygiene
To prevent infections and allergies, you want to wash your hands and wear clean clothes before you go to pick up, feed, or play with your little one. Furthermore, when bathing your baby, you want to wait until the umbilical cord falls off and the area around it heals before you start giving them normal baths. You want the temperature of the water at 37°C so as to not burn your baby. Pay attention to the products you use and remember to wrap your baby in a towel to dry off.
Remember to check their diapers often
You might have heard that your little one will go through an average of 10 to 12 diapers a day during their first month. That means that you will have to check their diaper rather often, every four hours, for instance. A healthy baby will be urinating frequently and you want to change them often in order to prevent diaper rashes from soiled diapers.
Let them get enough rest
Another interesting fact about newborns is that they need 16 to 20 hours of sleep per day. While this will not all happen at once, you still need to ensure they get plenty of rest. When putting your little one in the cot or crib, keep soft toys out of it to prevent suffocation and SIDS. Consider placing the crib near your bed so that you can easily tend to the baby during the night.
Take care of your own health
Taking care of your baby is essential once you become a mother. However, that doesn’t mean that you can afford to neglect your own health. No matter if you’ve always been healthy or experienced some common conditions during pregnancy, it’s vital to keep thinking about your health. In addition to eating healthily and getting plenty of physical activity, think about your mental health as well. Talk to people around you, visit a therapist and indulge in some hobbies that make you feel better.
Talk to them on a regular basis
If your social needs cannot be met in any other way, you can always talk to your little one. As a matter of fact, this practice will help their brain development and allow them to pick up words quickly. Plus, it will also help you bond with your baby and fight baby blues.
Don’t leave them unattended
Lastly, you also don’t want to leave your newborn unattended. You never know when they might start rolling over or even walking, which can lead to various incidents and injuries if you’re not present. Don’t leave them by themselves on the bed, in the bath, or in the car.
No matter if you’ve already welcomed your little bundle of joy or are preparing for the glorious moment, it’s important to keep these tips in mind to be the best mum you can be. From learning how to hold, feed, and change them to taking proper care of yourself, don’t overlook something essential.